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Moon Patrol - Atari - Atari 2600    Manual Scan icon HTML Manual   

Moon Patrol
Moon Patrol
NOTE: Always turn the console POWER switch OFF when inserting or
removing an ATARI Game Program cartridge. This will protect the
electronic components and prolong the life of your ATARI Video
Computer System game.


As a Moon Buggy driver, your objective is to travel across the
surface of the moon as quickly as you can. While you progress on your
journey, you'll encounter huge craters, exploding land mines, and
moon rocks on the lunar surface. To make your journey even more
challenging, your Moon Buggy comes under missile fire from alien
UFOs, some of which create even more craters.

Push your Joystick up to jump over craters, land mines, and other
obstacles. Time your jumps carefully: a poorly timed jump will cause
your Moon Buggy to crash. Push your Joystick right to increase the
speed of your Moon Buggy; push the Joystick left to slow it down.
Press the red fire button to shoot your laser guns. When an enemy car
appears from behind. use your jumping skill to jump over it, then
blast it away when it's in front of you. When you encounter an enemy
tank, jump over it and its bullets, or simply destroy it for maximum


You start the game with four Moon Buggy lives. If one is destroyed.
you restart at the course segment where your Moon Buggy was
destroyed. The number of Moon Buggies remaining is shown at the
bottom of the screen. When all your Moon Buggy lives are lost. the
game ends. To restart the game at the beginning. press the red fire

There are two courses and three skill levels: Easy. Medium, and Hard
(see GAME VARIATIONS). Each course is divided into 26 segments,
indicated by markers along the way. A segment is completed when its x
marker passes off the left side of the screen.

The gauge at the lower center of the screen indicates your location
on the course. It is divided into five sections, 1-5, 6-10, 11-15,
16-20, and 21-26. The gauge fills with color as you travel along the
course. When you complete course 1, your Moon Buggy moves on to
course 2, which continues to progress in difficulty.

A timer at the bottom of the screen clocks your journey. It starts
ticking away the seconds as soon as you start. When the timer reaches
999 seconds, it stops counting. but you can continue driving.

You score points for shooting UFOs and for destroying or jumping over
rocks, enemy cars, craters, tanks. and land mines. You can also earn
bonus points for completing the course in less than the average time
(see SCORING for details).


Plug one Joystick controller into the LEFT CONTROLLER jack for
one-player games; plug a second controller into the RIGHT CONTROLLER
jack for two-player games. In two-player games, the player using the
left controller starts the game. (See your owner's manual for further

Hold the controller with the red fire button to your upper left,
toward the television screen. Press the red fire button to start the

Use your Joystick to maneuver your Moon Buggy across the lunar
surface. Push the Joystick right to accelerate forward; push it left
to slow down, push it up to jump. Press the red fire button to shoot
missiles; your shots will go up and directly out in front of your
Moon Buggy at the same time.


Press GAME SELECT to choose the game variation you want to play. The
game variations are indicated at the bottom of the screen. (See GAME
VARIATIONS for more information about each variation.)

Press GAME RESET when you want to start the game over from the
beginning of the course.

The LEFT DIFFICULTY switch can be used to turn off the background
MOON PATROL music when placed in the A position. The RIGHT DIFFICULTY
switch can be used to select either two moving speeds or three moving
speeds. Set the switch to B for three speeds. set it to A for two


There are six game variations in MOON PATROL:

The EASY version is a good choice for beginners and young children.
This variation starts on course 1, and the difficulty progression is
slow. There are fewer craters. Land mines. and UFO missiles.

The MEDIUM version also begins on course 1, but its progression in
difficulty is faster.

The HARD version begins on course 2, and progresses quickly in

Regardless of the course on which you start, the difficulty level
progresses as you continue on your journey.


One bonus Moon Buggy is awarded at 10,000, 30,000, and 50,000 points.

Bonus points are awarded for completing a section of five markers,
for completing it in better than average time, and for completing the
entire course. See the following chart for bonus point values.

COURSE ONE                                POINTS
Completing each section of five markers     1000
Each second under 55 seconds it takes        100
to complete section 1 or 2
Each second under 60 seconds it takes        100
to complete section 3 or 4
Each second under 65 seconds it takes        100
to complete section 5
Completing the entire first course          5000

COURSE TWO                                POINTS
Completing each section of five markers     2000
Each section completed in less than          100
70 seconds
Completing the entire second course        10000

Jumping Pts.               Shooting Pts.
100         Single Crater  --
200         Double Crater  --
 50         Land Mine      --
 80         Rock          100
100         Tank          200
 --         Regular UFO   100
 --         Crater UFO    200
 --         Enemy Car     500/800/1000 (random)


As you travel along the course, you'll see areas where a rock is
placed just behind a land mine or crater. When this happens, time
your shot very carefully.

Another trick: Try taking one long jump over two closely positioned

Watch out for UFOs that look like this: ~ They drop missiles which
create huge craters directly in front of your Moon Buggy. The best
way to handle these pests is to destroy them before they can drop

To protect yourself, shoot at UFO missiles while they're in the air.

Start your jumps well in front of a hole to land just on the other
side, giving you more time and space to begin a second jump.

Scoring points for destroying the enemy car is random, so just shoot
as soon as you can.

-------------------Atari 2600 Instructions Archive-------------------

This document obtained from the History of Home Video Games Homepage, �1997-1998 by Greg Chance